Dynamics of ions produced by laser ablation of ceramic Al2O3 and Al at 193 nm
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- Baraldi, G., Perea, A. & Afonso, C.N. Appl. Phys. A (2011) 105: 75. doi:10.1007/s00339-011-6523-9
We study the dynamics of ions produced upon ablation of Al and ceramic Al2O3 targets using nanosecond laser pulses at 193 nm (6.4 eV) as a function of the laser fluence from threshold up to 12 J cm−2. An electrical (Langmuir) probe located at 40 mm from the target surface has been used for determining the ion yield and calculating the kinetic energy distributions. The results for both targets show the existence of a significant amount of ions having kinetic energies >200 eV (≈20% around threshold fluence), and kinetic energies are up to >1.5 keV. The results are related with the existence of direct photonionization processes caused by the photon energy of the laser being higher than the ionization potential of Al (5.98 eV). Comparison of the ion yield when ablating the two types of targets for fluences above threshold to data reported in the literature suggests that the magnitude of the yield and its threshold are parameters depending on the thermal properties of the target rather than on the laser wavelength. Around threshold, the different behavior of ion yield when ablating Al and Al2O3 targets suggests that the threshold for neutral aluminium and ion species in the case of ablation of the Al2O3 target must be similar.